The Netherlands cancels Turkish foreign minister’s flight, Dutch govt releases statement

The Netherlands has cancelled Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu’s flight into Rotterdam today. The foreign minister was supposed to travel to the country for a meeting with Turkish expatriates on the upcoming constitutional referendum in Turkey.

The Dutch government released the following statement regarding its decision:

“The Dutch government has decided to withdraw landing rights for the Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu in the Netherlands. There was an invitation to Turkish-Dutch nationals to participate in a mass public meeting with Minister Cavusoglu in Rotterdam on Saturday, March 11th.

The Netherlands had discussions with Turkish authorities regarding the visit to find an acceptable solution for safety concerns. There were discussions going on whether the Turkish authorities could move the meeting and could give a private, smaller meeting in a Turkish consulate or embassy. Even before these discussion were completed, the Turkish authorities publicly threatened us with sanctions. This makes the search for a reasonable solution impossible. Therefore, the Netherlands has announced to withdraw landing rights.

The Netherlands regrets the course of events, remains committed to dialogue with Turkey. The Netherlands and Turkey have a friendly relationship.

Many Dutch people of Turkish background are entitled to vote for the referendum on the Turkish Constitution. The Dutch government has no objection to meetings in our country to inform them about this. But these meetings must not contribute to tensions in our society and anyone who wants a meeting must adhere to the instructions of the respnsible authority so that public order and security can be guaranteed. It should be noted that the Turkish government did not want to respect those rules in this matter.”